Responding to a measles outbreak during the COVID-19 pandemic

Going village to village, “door to door” and “boat to boat” to maintain routine immunization services — and protect Cambodians from COVID-19.

On a sunny day in May, Bun Sreng Sineth and other immunization staff set up an immunization site in a Muslim community in Phnom Penh’s Mekong Operational District. On the banks of the Mekong River, children and their caregivers gathered under a tent to be immunized and to learn how to prevent COVID-19.

Sineth and her colleagues were responding to two disease outbreaks: a measles outbreak, and the COVID-19 pandemic. In January 2020, as Cambodia confirmed its first COVID-19 case, it also confirmed 84 cases of measles.

“I’m really happy that the government continues these outreach vaccination services,” Sineth said after the final child had received his immunization. She felt confident in her ability to continue administering immunizations safely, largely because of information she had received from the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO).

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